In Rivers State, candidates for governor from a few political parties stormed the state police headquarters on Friday to protest what they claimed was intimidation by Governor Nyesom Wike ahead of the election on Saturday.
The candidates are Tonte Ibraye of the African Democratic Congress, Senator Magnus Abe of the Social Democratic Party, Tonye Cole of the All Progressives Congress, Chief Dumo Lulu-Briggs of Accord, and Tonye Cole of the All Progressives Party.
Speaking, Abe criticized Governor Wike for ordering security services to detain and prosecute several state lawmakers on suspicion of attempting to rig elections, claiming that Wike lacked the authority to take such action.
He stated, “Most of those people named in that broadcast by the governor are simply those who have been campaigning for other political parties.
“A lot of them are members of the SDP, including a Nigerian citizen who just flew into this country just to come and participate in this election and cast his vote as a citizen of this country.
“Because he put up billboards for the SDP and mobilised voters to come out for the SDP, his name has been included as somebody who is to be apprehended and arrested. It is actually the responsibility of the Nigerian Police to declare anybody wanted.”
On his part, APC’s Cole said the protest was a multi-party decision, saying opposition parties had been victimised, intimidated and their members being arrested.
The Accord candidate, Lulu-Briggs said the alarm being raised was not just by the candidates, saying the electorate in the state was also worried.
He stated, “We want to ask the police to make sure that people have confidence in the system.”
Reacting, the state Commissioner for Information and Communications, Chris Finebone, debunked the allegations, saying the governor and the ruling PDP in the state would never indulge in such despicable act.